Buying on a Budget: The World of Student Discount



Debra Born, Assist. Features Editor

It can pay to be a college student.

By showing proof of college enrollment, such as a student email address or ID, many students are able to unlock discounts at many different stores and websites. The discounts can be applied to electronics and digital services, clothing, food, entertainment and more.

Students can also use discounts for products they have to buy for school. For example, Microsoft Office offers its full suite of software programs for free if students sign up using their college email address.

Some Utica College students frequently use student discounts, while others are unaware they even exist.

“I use student discounts at clothing stores,” said Brooke Catalano, a senior in the criminal justice major.

Some of the stores where Catalano takes advantage of the discounts are Calvin Klein and Banana Republic, which require student ID for proof of enrollment.

“I’m in the process of getting a credit card, and I know Discover does a student discount for high GPAs,” Catalano said.

A non-clothing outlet that Catalano talked about for special rates for students was Apple.

“I think for students becoming young adults, [student discounts] are a great way to open them up to electronics and clothing stores,” Catalano said. “It’s a good way to make us feel good about buying products.”

James Vienneau is a junior majoring in biology and chemistry. Vienneau only uses his student discount for Amazon Prime and Apple Music.

“It wouldn’t really make me go somewhere because they had a discount,” Vienneau said. “If I was there and they had it, I’d use it.”

Other students, such as freshman neuroscience major Logan Hummel, do not use any student discounts at all. Hummel said that he is not aware of any “good” student discounts, but that he would use them if he knew about them.

Freshman Chantal Rodriguez uses a student discount app on her phone called UniDays. The app sends Rodriguez emails about special prices for students, but she mainly uses it when she is in a store to see if there are any discounts she can use at checkout.

“It gives me a bunch of discounts for everything,” Rodriguez said.

Her favorite student discount is from American Eagle.

“I usually buy a bunch of stuff at American Eagle,” Rodriguez said.

UniDays gives students access to discounts from a range of stores, and Rodriguez said she would recommend the app to other students.

Junior Xavier Phillip explained that student discounts are not often promoted.

“I wish I knew where the student discount codes were,” Phillip said. “I think that they’re hidden for a purpose, but in a good way. They come in handy when you know about them.”

Phillip also uses UniDays to get information about student discounts.

“I would like to see more student discounts for myself, but also to give that company or organization more attention,” Phillip said. “And if they advertise it a little more often, that would be great.”

Phillip uses the UniDays app to take advantage of the reduced prices. He enjoys clothes shopping, but  also uses the student discounts for other places, including movie theaters, Best Buy and Apple.

“I like to see them in grocery stores,” Phillip said. “If there would be a time that I’d see a discount at a place like Walmart, I think that there would be less stealing than there is now.”

Freshman Kimberly Garcia uses student discounts at Urban Outfitters, Express and Vineyard Vines. She said that Apple gives students a 10 percent discount and that students can get many Mac or Apple accessories for free.

“There’s a lot of stores that don’t promote [student discounts],” she said. “You have to tell them that you’re a student, they don’t promote the discount.”

Another discount that Garcia uses often is for Apple Music.

“You pay $5 per month instead of $10 per month,” Garcia said. “Then you can have access to everything. That’s the best one.”

Many of the students said they wished more discounts were available to them.

“If more food places around the area offered student discounts, that would be amazing,” Garcia said. “[Utica College] should give you a rewards card for student discounts.”

Students can get access to a variety of discounts by downloading the UniDays app or visiting or